At the time of referral, Dylan was living with his mum, grandma and two younger sisters. He had a close relationship with his dad, until he was sent to prison. This had a serious impact on Dylan and his behaviour consequently deteriorated.
His mum was concerned that Dylan would get drawn into antisocial behaviour by a gang operating in their council estate. This meant Dylan wasn’t allowed to play outside the house.
At school, Dylan spent most lesson-time outside of the classroom with a learning mentor. Often Dylan got into trouble for various reasons. He refused to follow instructions, fought with peers and could be aggressive towards teachers.
He was passionate about football; however was banned from the school team due to being overly-competitive and hot-headed.
Despite his potential, Dylan was at risk of being permanently excluded because of his challenging behaviour.
The programme team at Chance UK matched Dylan with Nick. Nick shared Dylan’s passion for football and also played in a team himself.
At the start of the mentoring, Dylan and Nick played a lot of football oriented activities. In particular they played games in the park, visited different stadiums and also went to see a match.
Slowly, Dylan began to open up and Nick helped him to see that it was ok to talk about his feelings. They worked on increasing his confidence by learning about positive competitiveness and accepting that it’s ok not to be good at everything.
Nick successfully used Dylan’s sporting talents introducing him to fencing, badminton, rock climbing and swimming. Despite being more challenging he persevered and the activities were a great success.
In other sessions they went on various trips around London such as visiting museums and going on a boat trip.
Nick also built regular library sessions into their mentoring enabling Dylan to learn how to focus for longer periods of time.
By the end of the mentoring year, Dylan became much more confident speaking to other people and expressing himself.
He matured a lot and was more independent, often taking the lead travelling on public transport.
Nick helped Dylan learn to control his temper. As a result, he stopped getting into fights at playtime and was allowed back in to class full-time at school.
Much to his delight, he was also allowed to join the school football team again.
He completely changed his mind-set and is now driven to achieve in school; he is really looking forward to starting secondary school.
His mum is very proud of Dylan and can see all his personal strengths. Dylan’s dad was released from prison and attended his son’s Graduation ceremony with the whole family.
It was a very proud moment for them all to watch Dylan graduate from the Chance UK mentoring programme.